Pleasure Craft Operator Card ( PCOC )
The Competency of Operators of Pleasure Craft Regulations require operators of pleasure craft fitted with a motor and used for recreational purposes to have proof of competency on board at all times.
Proof of competency for for Non-Residents of Canada can take 1 of 3 forms:
1) An operator card or equivalent which meets the requirements of their state or country; or
2) A Pleasure Craft Operator Card (issued by an accredited Canadian Course Provider); or
3) A completed rental boat safety checklist (for power-driven rental boats)
And for Canadian Residents
1) A Pleasure Craft Operator Card;
2) Proof of having successfully completed a boating safety course in Canada prior to April 1, 1999; or,
3) A completed rental-boat safety checklist.
If you choose to get the operator card it is good-for-life and is excellent preparation for a safe boating vacation. If you choose not to get the card then you will most likly be using option 3 above the boat rental safety checklist which is a dockside boat orientation along with signing a waiver.
These requirements have been phased in over the last ten years.
Date at which proof of competency is required *
How this applies to operators** of pleasure craft fitted with a motor and used for recreational purposes:
- All Motorboat operators born after April 1, 1983, proof of competency required on board by September 15, 1999.
- All operators of craft under 4 m in length, including personal watercraft, proof of competency required on board by September 15, 2002.
- All operators, proof of competency required on board by September 15, 2009.
* These requirements apply in areas outside the Northwest and Nunavut Territories at this time.
** Applies to non-residents operating their pleasure craft in Canadian waters after 44 consecutive days. Operator card or equivalent issued to a non-resident by their state or country will be considered as proof of competency.
If you hold any certificate on the List of Certificates of Competency, Training Certificates and other Equivalencies as Proof of Competency when Operating a Pleasure Craft , you already meet the requirements of the Competency of Operators of Pleasure Craft Regulations – you just need to make sure you carry your certificate on board. Proof of certification may include original documentation or a copy of the certificate.
Visit AAA Boating Safety to do the test
Transport Canada accredited course provider
Who Is Affected?
Effective September 15, 2009, all Canadians who are operator of powered vessels in Canada will require a Pleasure Craft Operator Card (or proof of competency onboard) and Americans staying longer than 44 consectutive days in Canada or who bring their own boat into Canada. (NOTE this information is still new and is subject to changes of interpretation.)
The " Competency of Operators of Pleasure Craft Regulations " require operators of pleasure craft fitted with a motor and used for recreational purposes to have proof of competency onboard at all times.
Pleasure Craft Operator Card
- Is obtained after receiving a mark of at least 75% on a Transport Canada accredited test, after having completed an accredited course.
- Experienced boaters have the option of taking the test without first completing a course .
- The Pleasure Craft Operator Card Card is "Good for Life" and is just good common sense.
Minnesota DNR Boater Education Certificate
Prepared by the Minnesota Dept. of Natural Resources - Boat & Water Safety Section 651-259-5400
If you are going to Canada and will be operating a motorboat, there are some operator competency (boater education) requirements that became effective Sept. 15, 2009. These rules now affect all non-residents, as well as all Canadians, who operate boats with a motor attached. Please click on the web link to the "Canadian Visitor Information for Boaters" at the end of this e-mail. It will give you the latest detailed information on all operational and safety equipment requirements for visitors to Canada who will be boating.
Here is a quick summary of what you need to know:
IF YOU ARE BRINGING YOUR OWN MOTORBOAT FROM THE U.S. INTO CANADA - The competency certificate regulations do not apply to non-residents who operate their U.S. registered or documented pleasure craft in Canadian waters for less than 45 consecutive days. You must carry proof of U.S .residency, and your state watercraft registration card or US Coast Guard documentation certificate with you at all times when you are on the water.
IF YOU ARE USING A MOTORBOAT REGISTERED IN CANADA - EVEN IF YOU OWN IT - There are several options for you:
1) You may get the Canadian boating safety competency card. Check the following website for course information: http://www.tc.gc.ca/marinesafety/debs/obs/paperwork/paperwork_operator.htm
2) You may take your own state's boating safety course and carry a state-issued card. Minnesotans can obtain a Minnesota watercraft operator's permit (12-17 years old), or a Minnesota DNR boater education certificate (18 years of age or older) by taking one of the following courses:
a. The DNR's home-study course (free) call 651-259-5400 or toll free 1-888-646-6367 or www.dnr.state.mn.us/safety/boatwater/testpacket.html or
b. The on-line "Boat Minnesota" course ($20 test fee) at http://boat-ed.com/mn/ This site allows you to print out a temporary certificate on line.
c. Taking an approved US Coast Guard Auxiliary or US Power Squadrons' public boating safety course, obtaining a DNR Comparable Course form from the instructor upon completion and sending it into DNR for a Minnesota watercraft operator's permit (12-17 years old), or a Minnesota DNR boater education certificate (18 years of age or older).
3) If you are renting a boat in Canada, the rental agent can give you boat rental safety check list that you need to carry on board.
There are other restrictions on age of operation for certain types of craft and motor size noted on the web site listed below.
CANADIAN BOATING SAFETY CONTACT INFORMATION:
Web Site: http://www.tc.gc.ca/marinesafety/debs/obs/quick/quick_visitor.htm#a E-Mail: Questions@tc.gc.ca Phone: 613-990-2309 Fax: 613-954-4731
For more info contact:
Department of Natural Resources Boat and Water Safety
500 Lafayette Road St. Paul, MN 55155-4046
Ask about the "boater education certificate"